Who Was N. L. Wills? Help GRAGM Solve the Mystery

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N. L. Wills, 'The U.S landing at Leyte Island. H.M.A.S Australia fully engaged'

Who Was N. L. Wills? Help GRAGM Solve the Mystery

The team at the Gladstone Regional Art Gallery & Museum have been busy rediscovering an enormous body of work by an unknown artist, N. L. Wills.

The portfolio includes over 300 artworks, plus numerous slides. Interestingly though, mystery surrounds these paintings, drawings and images as the Gallery & Museum knows very little about the artist, N. L. Wills, or the history behind these works. 

"This huge collection had been sitting in the GRAGM archives for years and I was always curious to know more," said Gallery & Museum Curator, Jo Duke.

"To my knowledge, the works have never been shown here before, in fact, we don’t even know when the works were created. Some of them are dated '1990', while others seem to have been created much earlier."

It is clear the artist had a fascination with military vessels, especially war ships and planes. Some WWI war craft is showcased however the exhibition predominately features WWII boats and aircraft.

"We have assumed N.L. Wills is a man, but we could be mistaken. We believe he may have been ex-military, due to the subject matter, or possibly even a draftsman, due to the artists' skill. Either way, N. L. Wills was a dedicated historian and has created an incredibly well documented archive for the Gallery & Museum to share."

The team will continue researching in the hope of solving the mystery and reaching N. L. Wills or estate holders.

One Man's Passion: The N. L. Wills Collection is now on display at the Gallery & Museum until 13 May 2017.

If you think you might know something about the artist, contact Jo and the team today on (07) 4976 6766 or gragm@gladstone.qld.gov.au



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